Siliguri, Dec. 28: The draft of the Mahananda Action Plan (MAP) was presented by Smec India Private Limited, the consultants assigned to prepare a detailed conservation plan for the river and other arterial channels like the Phuleswari, Jorapani and the Sahu, at the Siliguri-Jalpaiguri Development Authority’s (SJDA) board meeting today.
The plan focuses on suggestions like evolving a separate sewerage system along with a solid waste management system for Siliguri.
Local environmentalists have often pointed to the need to improve the quality of water flowing down the Mahananda and free it of pollutants. So, the plan stresses on the necessity of “integrating” bio-gas plants with the permanent cattlesheds on the river bank.
SJDA superintending engineer Shankar Roychaudhuri told The Telegraph: “After a perusal of the draft plan, we think we will be able to accept the final plan. Before charting out the final plan, we are planning to sit with the representatives of other local agencies, like the irrigation department and the Siliguri Municipal Corporation, to work out certain modalities. The final plan would then be sent to the National River Conservation Directorate (NRDC) in New Delhi for approval of funds.”
Other measures highlighted by the plan are developing bathing ghats and undertaking plantation initiatives along the river bank.